Monstrous, Duplicated, Potent | Issue 28 | n+1

Haraway never claimed to have all the answers. Pointing out the limits to her project feels more like intellectual matricide than the fan fiction she requested. Then again, Haraway never wanted to be a mother. She imagined in the Manifesto that “a world without genesis” could also be “a world without end.” Critique doesn’t have to kill: it can simply lop off a limb, letting what remains regenerate, salamander-like, into something “monstrous, duplicated, potent.”

 

City Folk — Real Life

The normalization of suffering is a consequence of all systematization, implicit in all data collection.

 

ketchup part one: user centred ketchup experience

4 min read

sometimes this blog talks about food: deal with it.

me and martha got in a discussion about ketchup following eating some excellent eggs and talking about how we…don’t actually like ketchup(I’m team mayo, ideally with garlic, she’s a heathen who likes barbecue sauce). And, after falling down a rabbit hole(http://gladwell.com/2004/2004_09_06_a_ketchup.html">here’s a good place to start), opening far too many serious eats tabs, and reading the opinions of two rabbis on the subject, I’m going to make some ketchup. This may be influenced by us having run out of tea this morning and coming out of breakfast overcaffinated from coffee. If you ended up reading the article above, you’ll know that there’s pretty much already a perfect generic ketchup- heinz has created the idea of ketchup so much that the taste of other brands simply doesn’t taste of ketchup, and they’re(thus far) impossible to outcompete. That’s ok. We’re not trying to do that. We’re trying to make a ketchup that works for us, and the london hipster fucks that make up our friends.

The first question then, is, where is it used? what does it need to work with, and why doesn’t ketchup work well for us at the moment.

First off, foods we’re looking to eat the ketchup with:

  • eggs
  • chips
  • fried chicken
  • burgers(and other cheap simple fried red meat)

and why doesn’t it work for that at the moment

  • ketchup is simple
  • ketchup is really bland
  • the tastes are barley seperatable- it has a single taste built out of lots of flavors, not one that’s seperatable.
  • (in the same vein)it all happens at once- there’s one moment of taste, and then there’s aftertaste.
  • It doesn’t taste of tomato.
  • it has nowhere near enough garlic in it

We’re looking for a complex condiment to work with simple tastes for the most part(eggs, chips, and beef patties) and which works and contrasts with more complex flavours- bringing some freshness and fruitiness to chicken, and the same to burgers. basically- a one size fits all condiment for cheap/spoonless food, when we’re not making a sauce specifically for the purpose.

Fixing the simplicity of ketchup is obviously what’s on the table, and it’s safe to say we’ll be adding a fair bit more spice to it to combat the blandness- probably some fresh and/or dried peppers, not peppercorns, because we’re going for fruity.

separating flavours is the way we increase complexity- we’ll probably not stew the whole lot together, as most ketchups do, which brings the flavours together and means there’s only one phase to the taste- a stewed base is a given, but there’s probably going to be some fresher in the front too.

Fresh tomato up front, and working with a different base(people almost universally use pre made tomato paste, I think we’ll use at least two different mixes from two different points, and one of them being very fresh added towards the end should give us some of the actual tomato taste that’s missing from ketchup.

anyway, that’s a place to start. It’s also 500 words, I wish I could get this done on my essays this fast. Next episode: historical influences of ketchup, other cultures we’ll end up stealing stuff from to get the effects we want, and a provisional recipe.

 

✨✨✨ ANNOUNCEMENT TIME ✨✨✨

2 min read

(tl;dr: I'm in NYC between about the 6th and 15th, mostly working on two conferences and a documentary- HMU and if you've got a couch I'd love you forever)

I'm in NYC for #ttw17(april 6th-8th), talking about how transmisoginst violence creates traumatised bodies for reproductive and sexual labour, and how trans womens labour fits into materialist feminisms and wages for housework.

I'm also in Ithaca(cue, mountain goats) for "Imaginaries of the future: utopian after the human"(11/12th april), talking about how the hidden, safer, spaces trans women labour to create are a transapocaliptic tactic for surviving hostile social conditions.

I've also been commissioned by the same network to do a documentary(provisionally titled "refugia") on how trans women have historically, and do contemporarily, create spaces of refuge away from transmisogynistic society, and how this community building is a survival tactic. I'd love to speak to people who have thoughts on transmisogyny, community, and disposability while I'm there.

If you've got a couch I can crash on in this time(6th-10th or 13-15th) I'd love you forever

I've had travel and some costs paid for this by imaginaries of the future. Imaginaries of the future are funded by the Leverhulme trust, who were initially funded by(and act to cover up, by their silence) a business that used forced labour in the (then) belgian congo to run their business. As a white british person living in a city built on the slave trade, in a country built by empire, not gaining from colonialist institutions is impossible- but I can and will continue to draw attention to where this money has come from, how the Leverhulme trust acts, and will not be complicit in the ongoing cover up of the genocide in which William leverhulme was a significant part. I'll be writing more on the ills of the leverhulme trust, and talking about it in all output funded by them.

 

marxist-feminist STS(ok, haraway), circa 1985: so technologies encourage or discourage certain behaviours in complex ways, to create architectures of control that can be understood as materialised discourses. These technologies intersect with the body to produce unfaithful assemblages
Lessig, 1999: Code is law! code is architecture! look at this cute diagram that betrays my complete failure to engage with foucault! bodies don’t exist!
white men everywhere: (lessig, 1999)
haraway, 1999: I like dogs!

 

Thinkning of Quinn nortons "I have seen the tops of clouds" and trying to dig through depresion https://medium.com/message/i-have-seen-the-tops-of-clouds-e21c5941de32#.u5feofucq

 
 

Spent the day reading/listening to psychoanalyst BS and right now all it's making me want to do is produce impossibly rigid and rationalist art because i hate it so much. But yeah. Not actually a rationalist.

 
 

So @body_drift asked me what my fave SF was after I tweeted about how bullshit reading goals were. It got too long for tweets so here's some thoughts on my reading this last year, as I work on yearnotes.

Of what I read this year, ancillary mercy has to top the list(technically I read it 2015, but the rest of the trilogy this year. So I'm counting it. If not, the Annihilation score actually got me into the laundry files so that was a difficult task.)

I enjoyed strosses the nightmare stacks(and am looking forwards to the new merchant princes). Accelerando remains his best work IMHO.

Grossmans the magicians trillogy were excellent bait for my conceited brain, though lacking severely on the politics front.

I really enjoyed a couple of the star wars companion novels(ahsoka especially, though it requires watching a lot of other material to work- it basically functions as fanfiction).

I re-read a lot of gibson(bigend trilogy, of which zero history is my favorite book, and the peripheral was scary as always.)

I also re-read a lot of westerfeld(uglies is where my handle is from, specials is probably the best of his work, and afterworlds has queer writer women in new york kissing romantically on rooftops and eating noodles, though is let down by a weird narrative device).

My best nonfiction this year was malms Fossil capital, followed by seperate and dominate, christine delphy, and finally getting to sit down with federichis caliban and the witch was great for me and my work.

The best fanfiction I read was probably "And None Of It Seems To Matter" by kablob and mylordshesacactus, and I'd heartily recommend anything by them. The work of narceus comes in a close seccond, but I can't pick a single story of theirs. "Build a Brave New Foundry Close To Home" by them is probably close, and they also have some excellent ace porny stuff

On that subject, the best straight up porn I read was christine gretas "bending". Content notes for everything on that.